Caregivers' resources are available here
Here are some resources for caregivers who need answers regarding a specific situation:
DARTS Information & Assistance, 651-455-1560
Dakota County Veterans' Services, 651-554-5601
Disability Linkage Line, 1-866-333-2466
Senior Linkage Line, 1-800-333-2433
Veterans Linkage Line, 1-888-546-5838
For a resource guide for service providers who can help in your caregiver journey, stop by the Hastings Senior Center in the Tilden Community Center, or go online to: www.darts1.org/dakota-county-eldercare-resources.
Caregiver information you might find helpful:
If any of our caregivers are Boomers, the Regina Foundation and the American Association of University Women are offering a free informational seminar, "Keys to Successful Aging in the Baby Boom Generation." The seminar, featuring William B. Orr, Ph.D., M.D., FAPA Regina Medical Center is next Monday, Feb. 25, at Our Saviour's Evangelical Church, 400 W. Nine St., Hastings. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the program starts at 7 p.m. Pre-registration is required, so call 651-480-4244, or send an email to AAUWHastings@gmail. com if you plan to attend.
Memory Loss Support Group meets the third Tuesday of each month from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the private dining room at Regina Medical Center. Contact Kim Schrader at 651-480-6812 for more information.
Vision Loss Support Group meets the fourth Thursday of each month from 10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. in the activities kitchen at Regina Medical Center. Contact Kim Schrader at 651-480-6812 for more information.
If you would like information about Advance Care Directives or help completing one with your loved one, contact Rev. Peter Morlock, Advanced Care Planning chaplain at Regina Medical Center. He can be reached by calling 651-480-4587.
Here is one caregiver's reflections on caring for older loved ones:
The most heartbreaking result of my father's assortment of illnesses is that easy conversation is no more. Hearing is gone. Thinking is slow. Speaking takes great effort--finding the words, making the sounds, getting "unstuck" from phrases that tumble out in repetition. Writing is impossible. But when it's important, he finds a way to communicate. Sometimes a little mind reading is involved.
Recently, my mom and I were passing the time by looking at clothing catalogs. She pointed out items she liked and could imagine wearing, and things she thought were beautiful but way too expensive. My dad sat, quietly observing. As I was getting ready to leave much later in the day, he pointed at the stack of catalogs and said, clear as a bell, "Did you find anything?" I jotted a note telling him we had seen lots of pretty things. My mother out of the room now, he repeated a bit more strongly, "Did you find anything?" My face was a question mark, so he added, "It's on the 28th, the 28th, the 28th." A light bulb appeared over my head, and I wrote, "Would you like me to get mom an anniversary present from you?" Jan. 28 was my parents' wedding anniversary. Dad gave mom some new clothes.
(Editor's note: Beth's complete online journal can be found at: www.darts1.org/blog/caring
If you would like to submit a question or concern about your own caregiving experience, and get direct, one-to-one information and advice from a licensed social worker and eldercare advisor, please visit: www.darts1.org/online-care giving-advisor or call 651-455-1560.